An Interview with Conlon Nancarrow
In April of 1977 Charles Amirkhanian journeyed to Mexico City to talk with composer Conlon Nancarrow, who had settled there after a self-imposed exile from the United States, following the harassment he experienced over his involvement with the Communist Party, and his fighting in the Spanish Civil War. The two discussed the mechanics of composing for the player piano, a process of manually punching literally thousands of holes in long rolls of paper. Nancarrow also relates his association, or lack there of, with other composers, his dissatisfaction with the lack of temporal control in the electronic music of his day, and his experience studying counterpoint with Roger Sessions. Sounding very relaxed and genial, Nancarrow also goes into some detail about how he composes and describes some of his later works.
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